The first real town of the Middle Atlas, AZROU makes an attractive “introduction” to the region, an important but welcoming Berber market centre enclosed by wooded slopes on three sides. The town grew at the crossroads of two major routes – north to Meknes and Fez, south to Khenifra and Midelt – and long held a strategic role in controlling the mountain Berbers. Moulay Ismail built a kasbah here, the remains of which survive, while more recently the French established the prestigious Collège Berbère – one plank in their policy to split the country’s Berbers from the urban Arabs.

South of Azrou lies some of the most remote and beautiful country of the Middle Atlas: a region of dense cedar forests, limestone plateaus and polje lakes that is home to some superb wildlife, including Barbary apes. At its heart, and an obvious focus for a trip, are the waterfalls of Oum er Rbia, the source of Morocco’s largest river.

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7 places to get off the tourist trail in Morocco

7 places to get off the tourist trail in Morocco

Marrakesh? Check. The souks of Fez? Been there, bought that. Jebel Toubkal? Climbed it, twice. So what else does Morocco have in store once you’ve ticked off …

25 May 2017 • Keith Drew insert_drive_file Article
The best places to go in spring

The best places to go in spring

Springtime is beautiful, with its big blue skies and flowers in bloom, so there may be no better time to travel. If you're thinking about getting away, here are…

14 Feb 2017 • Rough Guides Editors camera_alt Gallery
Meknes: the Moroccan city you've never heard of but need to visit 

Meknes: the Moroccan city you've never heard of but need to visit 

With the title of Imperial City and a UNESCO-stamped ancient medina, Meknes can rival the likes of Marrakesh, Rabat, and Fez, yet it struggles to attract the…

08 Dec 2016 • Kirsten Henton insert_drive_file Article
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